2020, December 9: Morning Crescent Moon Approaches Venus

Moon in Virgo, December 9, 2020
2020, December 9: The crescent moon is over halfway up in the sky in the south-southeast. It is 3.3° to the upper right of Gamma Virginis (γ Vir, m = 3.4).

December 9, 2020:  Before sunrise the Crescent is near the star Gamma Virginis while brilliant Venus is low in the southeast.  In three mornings, a thin moon joins Venus before sunrise.

by Jeffrey L. Hunt

Moon, Spica, Venus, December 9, 2020
2020, December 9: The crescent moon is over halfway up in the sky in the south-southeast. It is 3.3° to the upper right of Gamma Virginis (γ Vir, m = 3.4). It is above Spica and Venus.

Chicago, Illinois:  Sunrise, 7:07 a.m. CST; Sunset, 4:20 p.m. CST.  Check local sources for sunrise and sunset times for your location.

Crescent moon, December 9, 2020
2020, December 9: The moon (24.3 days after the New Moon phase, 33% illuminated) is over halfway up in the sky in the south-southeast.

Before sunrise the crescent moon is about halfway up in the sky in the south-southeastern sky.  It is among the stars of Virgo, near Gamma Virginis (γ Vir on the chart).  The moon is 33% illuminated. Tomorrow morning, the moon is near Spica.

Venus in Libra, December 9, 2020
2020, December 9: Brilliant Venus is low in the southeast, 3.4° to the upper left of Iota Librae (ι Lib).

Venus is lower in the southeastern sky among the stars of Libra.

Venus, December 9, 2020
2020, December 9, 2020: Venus low in the southeast.

On December 12, the thin crescent moon is above Venus.  The pair should inspire photographers and artists.

Crescent Moon, Venus, Aldebaran, July 17, 2020
2020, July 17: The crescent moon, Venus, and Aldebaran in the eastern sky before sunrise.

Reflected sunlight from Earth’s features gently illuminates the night portion of the moon.  This is known as earthshine.

The earthshine effect can be seen with a binocular or small telescope.  Get ready for the scene that occurs in a few mornings to capture the scene in a creative way.

The photo above from earlier during 2020 displays the earthshine effect.

Detailed Note: One hour before sunrise, the moon (24.3d, 33%) is over halfway up in the sky in the south-southeast.  It is 3.3° to the upper right of Gamma Virginis (γ Vir, m = 3.4).  Venus is lower in the southeast, about 11° in altitude. It is 3.4° to the upper left of ι Lib. 

See our summary about Venus during December 2020 and the feature article  about Venus as a Morning Star.

Read more about the planets during December.

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